If you are following along with these tests and have looked at the melamine tests I did a few weeks back using masking tape and Frog tape to see if either one of them will reduce or eliminate tear out, the results are quite clear, the tape did nothing to reduce tear out, in fact, it could be argued the Frog tape made the cuts slightly worse.
Since most people are using natural wood, it only follows that I should be testing natural wood as well to give some conclusive results to these tests.
Watch it on Youtube: https://youtu.be/mT7gfCkx8ew
I had many people provide many suggestions in the comments section of the last test offering their knowledge on how to better cut melamine, but the test was not how to cut melamine, the test was to see if tape could actually make a difference in the cuts, and in that case, it did not ... check out the results of what it did on natural woods here ...
These tests were crosscutting hard wood - Oak, softwood - Pine and plywood - cabinet grade plywood. Test were conducted for both ripping and crosscutting with 3 blades only. 1 - 10 inch non name 40 tooth general purpose blade for both cross cutting and ripping, plus 1 - 10 inch Freud 90 Tooth Crosscut blade and 1 - Freud 10" Glue Line Rip blade.
It's can be harder for cameras to pick up subtle details in the wood examples, which is precisely why melamine is chosen for tests like these. The contrasting of white with dark makes it much easier to see even the tiniest defects, and melamine is easily a much more sensitive product to use for testing purposes. If a saw blade can pass the melamine test it will easily pass any other wood or wood product test. Even with less than perfect video and still pictures, it remains pretty conclusive that using masking tape does nothing to help reduce or eliminate tear-out. And when we think about the materials used in the manufacture masking tape, which consists of some form of paper and glue, and a product that can be easily torn with a person's fingers, even by children, for all the wonders of masking tape for many, many jobs ... usage for reducing tear out using wood with steel and carbide blades at very high speed is little more than an urban myth which is often compounded by people who would use it incorrectly, such as applying masking tape on the leading edge of the cut where the cut would be crisp and clean naturally.
There are ways of reducing tear out, there are ways of making cleaner cuts and the best and easiest way to do this is with better quality blades although are means are possible too.
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Copyright Colin Knecht